How have your quiet times been these past few weeks? Have you taken time each day to be with the One you love? Can you feel Him close, hear His voice?
Jesus said, “My sheep hear My voice.” John 10:27 NKJV. He didn’t say, “Maybe you might hear.” Rather, listening to God’s voice is characteristic of those who belong to Him. John 10:1-18.
God speaks in different ways. Just a few of the many the Bible mentions:
- Through the Word (2 Timothy 3:16-17)
- Through circumstances (2 Corinthians 12:7-10; Psalm 40:1-3)
- Through others (1 Corinthians 2:4-13)
- Through His still small voice in your mind and heart (Psalm 42:8)
- Through dreams and visions(Acts 2:17)
- Through impressions or urgings (Acts 15:28)
- Through a sense of peace (Philippians 4:7)
- Through signs and wonders (Acts 2:17-21)
- Through nature(Psalm 125; 19:1-4)
Which of these has He used to speak to you? Are there any other ways you “hear” Him? How can you be sure God’s speaking, not the enemy or yourself?
Whatever God says will agree with His Word—not a few verses, but all of it. The enemy knows Scripture too, and he twists it for his purposes. Luke 4:9-12. But if we know God’s Word well, then we will know God well, because whatever God says will agree with His character, especially His character of love. Matthew 22:37-40.
The Word says we are His bride. Isaiah 62:5; Jeremiah 2:2; Revelation 19:7. What kind of a relationship would a wife have with her husband if all she did was serve him, but she never listened to him? How would she know his heart, his desires? He wouldn’t have a companion; he’d have a worn-out slave busy doing a lot of things he never asked for. Worst of all, she wouldn’t know him—the one she fell in love with, the one she committed her life to forever, her lover, her friend. When he chose her as his bride, it wasn’t so she’d be his slave. It was because he wanted to be with her, to do this thing called life together. Hosea 2:16.
God loves us. He is for us. We don’t have to be afraid of His voice or of what He might ask us to do because He has already promised us His strength to do it. Philippians 4:13. In fact, whatever God says will draw us closer to Him. Even when He convicts us of sin, His voice is full of grace, not condemnation. Romans 8:1. He longs to draw us out of the things like pride and busyness that separate us from His felt presence and His power, so we can be one with Him.
“My sheep listen to My voice; I know them, and they follow Me. … If you love Me, you will obey what I command. … You will see Me. Because I live, you also will live. On that day you will realize that I am in My Father, and you are in Me, and I am in you. Whoever has My commands and obeys them, he is the one who loves Me. He who loves me will be loved by My Father, and I too will love him and show Myself to him. … If anyone loves Me, he will obey My teaching. My Father will love him, and we will come to him and make our home with him.”
John 10:27, 14:15-23 NIV